Gandhianism starts with the famous line – ‘ Simple living and high thinking’. Recently, on 2 October, the nation celebrated Gandhi Jayanti to honor the Father of the Nation, Mahatma Gandhi. Gandhi Jayanti is somberly celebrated throughout the nation. The United Nations has also declared 2 October as the International Day of Non-violence in honour of Mahatma Gandhi.
Gandhiji’s life was the optimum example of ‘simple living, high thinking’, and his followers included Nelson Mandela, Martin Luther King, the Dalai Lama and Aung San Suu Kyi. Against Gandhiji’s principle of ahimsa, violent protests and clashes are increasing in the world. Many wars are being fought over national/state boundaries, religions, caste, race, river sharing, economics, etc. Hundreds of terrorist groups are working in several countries. Thousands of humans are losing their lives in battles or terrorist-related violence. Minor divergences or clatters are prompting people to take up arms and attack each other.
These increasing cases of violence and intolerance is being blazed and fueled by the recent narrative of extreme right-wing nationalism and opinions. Within nations, humans are clashing over race, caste, religion, injustice, etc. Against Gandhiji’s principles of truthfulness, many are lying routinely. Honesty and truthfulness have become rare qualities. Regarding equality also, India is the second most unequal country in the world with the top one percent of the population owning nearly 60 percent of the wealth.
Ironically, Gandhiji’s principles are more relevant today. Like his quote, “An eye for an eye only ends up making the whole world blind,” in the long run violence strains more violence, making us more self-doubting and unhappier. Do you believe in Gandhiji’s principles of ahimsa, honesty, equality, secularism and tolerance?